Marvel's Agent Carter Review by Henry Tran

Marvel's Agent Carter 1.06: A Sin to Err

Marvel's Agent Carter 1.06: A Sin to Err

Written By:
Lindsey Allen
Directed By:
Stephen Williams

What happened in Russia was a milestone for Peggy's career in the SSR career. She got out of the stuffy office where she was seen as unequal to the rest of the men within and actually accomplished something significant in the field. She helped the SSR in more ways than I think even she knows. This episode was humming along on one level for a little while and then, suddenly, it jumped up to a whole different level that elevated the tension, action, and surprisingly brought most of the running plot threads together.

It really is pleasant to see the very moment when the show skillfully and fluidly uses the pre-existing conditions of the plot to move the arc into the next phase. It's getting close to the end so the conclusion should be a sight to see given what has been set up over the past few episodes here.

The start of the episode plays as its own little play within the episode at large. It doesn't really set up anything that affects the later events of the episode, but is rather a continuation of Peggy's investigation into Howard Stark's clandestine activities. It's nothing spy-related, though that has something to do with Peggy and Jarvis' goal. They're searching for the Leviathan agent who has been infiltrating the country and forcing Stark to give her access to his inventions. We on the outside know they need to find Dottie, though all indications are that they don't get too close to the right answer. But they were on the right track to getting there.

While that's happening, Agent Sousa rapidly gets confirmation of his suspicions that Peggy is the blonde in the pictures from the club as well as the person who had been subverting their ow investigation into Howard Stark. Rather unexpectedly, Sousa's investigation forces Peggy and Jarvis to switch from the hunters to the hunted, as the SSR makes it their mission to arrest and interrogate Peggy.

The pace of the episode quickens at the halfway mark when the action centerpiece kicks in. Multiple SSR agents descend on the automat, which forces Peggy and Jarvis to improvise an escape. Instead of using the usual quick cuts and propulsive score that are staples of many action scenes across many shows, Agent Carter plays a big jazz band song as Peggy proceeds to fight her way out of this sticky situation. She has proven herself a capable and dangerous fighter before, but this is the first time her co-workers from the SSR has seen the true scope of her abilities.

It pays off what Agent Thompson saw while fighting with her and the Howling Commandos in Russia. He doesn't underestimate her from here on out. It's much more tragic when Peggy pleads to Agent Sousa to let her go, simply because he was less of a sexist pig than the others. Sousa had slowly come around to respect what Peggy brought to the office so this is a much more personal betrayal to him than anyone else in the office.

Beyond those in the office, getting caught also complicates the life she was sort of building at the Griffith. This is played down in comparison to the betrayal of the SSR, but it's no less potent. Dottie is systematically working her way to her ultimate objective, which is to kill Peggy, and this is in concert with the Russian doctor who is also infiltrating the SSR to get his hands on Stark's inventions. I like that the revelation that the doctor is a Leviathan agent is played subtly and that it's interwoven with what Dottie is doing. The rifle scope is an odd bit of misdirection but the communication between these agents was always going to be more than what it seems (remember, this is the same organization that uses an automated typewriter to issue directives). Peggy looks to be in the free and clear from the Griffith at first, with some deft assistance from Angie, but that turns on a dime as well. The revelations once again come fast and loose, with Dottie planting a knockout kiss on Peggy, her finding out that Dottie is the Leviathan agent she's been searching for, then the SSR agents arresting her.

Peggy finally gets the equal treatment by her colleagues that she's been desperately looking for, only she had to get it by being marked as a threat. The doctor was right: A woman can so very easily get past a man's defenses, and it's usually too late for them to even realize it's happening to do anything about it. The real threat to the SSR is running free and is right under all of their noses, yet they choose to concentrate on one of their own. It's the wrong choice, and I fear they will pay for it later.

Our Grade:
The Good:
  • Peggy is finally getting the respect she deserves, but not in the way she expected!
The Bad:
  • Can there really only be a couple episodes left?

Henry Tran is a regular contributor of review for Critical Myth; The Critical Myth Show is heard here on VOG Network's radio feed Monday, Wednesday & Friday. You can follow him on twitter at @HenYay

Marvel's Agent Carter by - 2/16/2015 10:52 AM151 views

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